Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Boodhoo Voodoo

Last week I had the absolutely pleasure of attending JP Boodhoo’s Develop With Passion Bootcamp at my company’s office in Regina.

The title of the course has recently changed from Nothing But .NET because it was misleading, and JP stated so several times during the week.  While we learned a lot about .NET, design patterns and test-driven development, the real goal of the course is to teach developers the skills for learning on their own and opening their minds to alternative programming methods.  So many developers rarely look outside of their own little circle of development for new ideas.  It’s comfortable in their circles and looking elsewhere is something foreign to them.  JP teaches the skills required to make those leaps outside of your comfort zone and be able to continually expand the boundaries of your skillset.

For some courses it is viable to send one person and have him bring back his learnings to the team.  This is not one of those course.  It has to be experienced first-hand.  JP is extremely passionate about development and that passion is infectious.  His ability to inspire developers and make people want to become better programmers is second to none.  The course is carefully designed to guide each developer through a personal journey that cannot be replicated by someone else.  JP has a special talent for inspiring people to strive to be better developers, and coupled with his ability to teach the skills to continue learning is a unique combination that has to be experienced in person.

This is definitely a course where you get out of it what you put into it.  JP really challenges you and forces you outside of your comfort zone.  I can say with certainty that every single person in attendance was quickly forced out of the comfort zone that they were used to being in when coding.  What happened next was up to the individual.  Those who chose to embrace that awkward feeling and challenged themselves to learn something new got full value out of the course.  They learned a lot about patterns and different coding techniques and, more importantly, learned the skills required to keep the momentum of learning going.  They not only became better developers in that week, they have set themselves up for continuing that rapid growth for a long time to come.  However, those who chose to fight the discomfort and actively tried to get back into their developer rut, likely didn’t learn much and won’t have a very positive reflection on the course.

I highly recommend this course for developers of all levels.  There is nothing more valuable in a developer than an active engagement and desire to continually improve their skills.  I have been involved in the developer community for over 10 years and I know several other people who have taken this course.  They couldn’t say enough good things about it and used the skills they learned to launch their careers to new heights.  Having now taken the course myself, I can honestly say that this course is a great way to propel your skills to the next level.

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